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12 Desperate Straight Lines - Merge
FILTER Grade: 80%

By Jeffrey Brown on March 24, 2011



On 12 Desperate Straight Lines, Telekinesis does everything good power pop does, providing uncountable hooks and letting songs last just long enough to necessitate another listen. Producer Chris Walla’s touch is evident throughout, fleshing out sounds to make it interesting without becoming too slick. While Lines doesn’t escape the limits of its genre—a little more substantial than an EP, consistent but not expansive—it plays its role well, and has enough moments to hold up beyond the first couple listens. It would be interesting to see Michael Benjamin Lerner explore more of the pace he settles down into in “Patterns,” or apply his lyrical chops to a mesh of other styles—he seems to be at his best when he can’t help but sing and play his heart out. It might not end up on everyone’s best-of list, but could easily be amongst the most listened-to albums of the year.

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